Drawing a basketball may sound like a simple task for most of us. But when you want a realistic looking basketball it can certainly take some time if you are not familiar with drawing these kinds of objects.

  1. Draw the Circle

Your perfect basketball begins with a perfect circle. The size of the circle should be moderate. If it is too big you would find it difficult to create the inner designs.

  • You can use a circular protractor to make a perfect circle. But if you feel that it would make the basketball too big, then you can try with a geometry compass.
  • The easiest way to make a quick circle is to use a stencil. Most of the stencils allow you to draw circles of various sizes. So you can choose a size that matches your needs.
  1. Draw the Central Lines

If you observe a basketball, you can see that it has some lines running along the central area. These lines give the basketball its iconic look.

  • Before you draw the central line, you need to find a picture or photograph of a real basketball. Find an image that offers the perspective view of the basketball.
  • For getting the perfect perspective view, the lines should be drawn with an appropriate degree of curviness. Draw a vertical curved line close to the left end of the sphere.
  • Now draw a horizontal line along the center of the sphere. This line should have a very slight curve compared to the vertical line. The point where the vertical and the horizontal lines pass each other is the center of the sphere.
  1. Draw the Upper Curve

The upper curve of a basketball can be tricky and if you are not careful, the step can ruin your drawing. So make sure that you closely check out your reference image before doing this curve.

  • The U-shaped curve runs over the vertical line you have created. It joins the vertical line a little above the horizontal line.
  • The curve should start at the left upper edge of the sphere and drop the maximum as it touches the vertical line and then slowly curve outwards to join the right upper edge of the sphere.
  1. Draw the Lower Curve

Just as the upper curve, the lower curve should also be carefully done. Both these curves determine the realistic nature of your drawing.

  • This curve would begin at the left lower edge of the sphere and rise upward to pass the central vertical line and then slowly tilt downwards until it touches the lower right edge of the sphere.
  • The point where the curve intersects the vertical line should lie at a little distance from the horizontal line.
  1. Thicken the Lines

If you look at a real basketball, the black lines appear to have around 1cm of thickness. So your next step would be to make the lines as bold as possible.

  • To make the lines look bolder, you can start by drawing a double line for the central and curved lines. This would take some time but make sure that you do it perfectly.
  • Once the double lines are done, you can darken it with your pencil. You can also use a black sketch pen.
  1. Draw the Spots

A basketball has a rough surface with tiny spotty bumps. These bumps are made to offer a better grip and you can include them in your drawing to make things look more real.

  • If you check images of realistic basketball sketches, you can see how the spots are made. The spots are darker near the central lines and lighter along the border.
  • If you feel that spots are difficult and time-consuming you can gently shade the areas near the central lines.
  1. Add a Logo or Text

Now that you are done with your basketball drawing, you can enhance it by adding a logo or a text. You have to select a suitable reference image for getting this part right.

  • You can use alphabet stencil to make the texts look perfect. You have to modify the size along the periphery to suit the perspective view of your basketball.
  • After adding the logo and text, shade it using your pencil. The shade should be darker than the lines so as to create the desired effect.


  • The points, where both the upper and the lower curves meet the vertical line, should be at an equal distance from the center of the sphere.

Unless you are planning to color your drawing, avoid using a sketch pen for darkening the lines.